Innovating Next Generation Lithography in Germany and the US sponsored by
Professor Dr. Jörg Sydow, Freie Universität Berlin, Institut für Allgemeine Betriebswirtschaftslehre
Professor Dr. Arnold Windeler, Technische Universität Berlin, Institut für Soziologie
In the semiconductor industry, the basic production In order to create a new production technology chip
technology called optical lithography is presently makers, suppliers and university laboratories have to
facing commercial and technological limits, thus co-ordinate an array of novel technologies, each with its
forcing the semiconductor companies to look for own technical and economic challenges. Around the
succeeding technologies which are commonly globe, especially in the U.S., Europe and Japan, they
referred to as next generation lithography (NGL). organise their activities in multiple R&D consortia,
joint ventures and government research programmes
which serve as a locus for organising the individual
Schematic of Extreme Ultra Violet Lithography. Source: Sweeney, D. (1999): Extreme
Ultraviolet Lithography: Imaging the Future, In: Science & Technology Review, 11: 6.
The case study: path dependency and path creation in the field of NGL
Technological innovations do not happen out The picture below illustrates the various paths that The developments in NGL, which is expected
of the blue. In the classic study of the QWERY existed in the field of NGL in 2003. The current to be used from 2014 on, can bee seen as
keyboard layout, David (1985) has pointed to photon path of optical lithography is estimated to end efforts toward creating a path. Technologies
the historical determination and prolonged around the year 2014. Optical lithography has like extreme ultraviolet lithography (EUV)
existence of sub optimal technological experienced continual incremental enhancements so require radical changes in production, like
solutions and labelled this aspect path that is has outlived many rival technologies in the past using mirrors instead of lenses and developing
dependency. Also, technological innovations two decades. This persistence can only be explained a whole new photon source.
may be influenced by powerful actors who are by the active engagement for continuing the use of
capable of building up the necessary optical lithography. American manufacturers like Intel and AMD
momentum for path creation (Garud/Karnøe cooperate with European suppliers like ASML
2001). option no longer actively pursued
L) and Carl Zeiss since 1996 in order to make this
The success of a technological option in the ay
ogra NGL technology ready for marketing. Electron
field of NGL depends not only upon p rox
path projection lithography (EPL) as another
technological feasibility, but also on the ability lithography
option, has been supported by companies like
extreme ultraviolet (EUV)
to establish powerful alliances for developing IBM and Nikon.
and introducing a major change in production photon path enhanced 193/157nm
methods. For this reason we focus on forms of The challenge that all chip manufacturers
inter-organisational cooperation, like R&D electron projec
likewise face, is the narrowing of options in
consortia, in the pre-competitive area and their
order to select a reliable and cost effective
coordinating practices, like roadmaps, for 65nm pro
p roje NGL technology for mass production, that is: to
create a path that will enable them to follow
it y on
aligning the R&D efforts and for providing 32nm ctr
the requirements of Moore’s Law by making
node og (IP
planning reliability in an area, where hy
specialists constantly work ‘on the edge of precursor
ever smaller structures on computer chips in a
physics’. generations next generation lithography systems cost effective way.
Research Questions & Methods
In the main, our project asks the questions: For theory, we draw on the concepts of path dependency and path
- Can inter-organisational arrangements like R&D consortia be creation for identifying different technological paths and on
understood as path-creating networks who serve as a locales for Giddens’ theory of structuration to provide a solid sociological
organising innovation processes? foundation for the subsequent analysis.
- Which practices are connected with collectively innovating a Regarding methods, we conduct qualitative interviews with
new technology, looking at the ability of the actors to influence experts from the field, attend conferences and analyse
the development of technologies? publications. We use qualitative methods for analysing the
To analyse the social, technical and economic relations between interviews and publications in order to asses the significance of
companies, laboratories and government funding as well as actor relations and events, which will be supported by
legislation remains the key issue to be addressed in the course of quantitative data on the changes of actor relation over time with
the project. respect to a specific path.
David, Paul A. (1985): Clio and the Economics of QWERTY. In: American Cornelius Schubert M.A., Institut für Soziologie, TU Berlin
Economic Review, 75 (2): 332-337. Franklinstr. 28/29, 10587 Berlin, Sekretariat FR 2-5
Garud, Raghu; Karnøe, Peter (2001): Path Creation as a Process of Mindful
Deviation. In: Garud, R.; Karnøe, P. (Hg.): Path dependence and creation.
Tel: +49 30/314-73679
Mahwah, Lawrence Erlbaum Associates: 1-38. Fax: +49 30/314-79494
Sydow, Jörg; Windeler, Arnold; Möllering, Guido (2004): Path-Creating Networks E-Mail: Cornelius.Schubert@TU-Berlin.de
in the Field of Next Generation Lithography: Outline of a Research Project.
Rammert, W.(Hg.): Technology Studies Working Papers. TUTS-WP-2-2004.
Berlin, Technische Universität, Institut für Soziologie. http://www.tu-